Join legions of adventurers in Rift: Planes of Telara, a new fantasy massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) set in a world being torn apart.

Rifts violently rip into reality across the land and release powerful forces that threaten the very existence of Telara. Each breach brings with it new characters, events, and treasures, while the world itself changes dynamically around you.

Play with your friends across vast, lavishly detailed environments, or go head-to-head in challenging Player versus Player (PvP) combat as you battle to uncover the secrets of the planes. Build and advance your character using an innovative new class system with limitless possibilities.

The rifts have divided the people and endanger the world. Whether you fight to seal the rifts forever, or harness their power for your own, epic adventures lie ahead for those willing to fight for the future of Telara.



Concept Art



The Rifts of Telara:

Mysterious rifts are tearing the world of Telara apart. A powerful magic explosion during the final days of the Shade War has left the veil between Telara and other planar dimensions fractured and torn.

Treacherous and powerful, these rifts occur when another plane of reality intersects with the magical Ward protecting Telara. Rifts create doorways for planar invasion, destroying the lands and people of Telara, but they may also grant otherworldly power to those brave enough to seize it.

Now no part of Telara is truly safe. Invasions can occur anywhere and at any time, and the danger to the world is growing. Two major factions have emerged to save the world of Telara from the rifts: the Guardian and the Defiant. Each faction works in different ways to preserve Telara's future, and both seek to undermine the other.



Planes:

Telara is one of many worlds in the known universe, but unlike the others it rests at the intersection of several powerful planes of reality, the very forces that make up all existence. The planes form a nexus of energy around Telara, and it is this unrivaled power that first attracted the mighty elemental gods of the Blood Storm.

Led by Regulos, god of Death, the Blood Storm devoured countless worlds in its unending hunger for conquest. But when these baleful gods moved toward Telara, the Blood Storm turned upon itself; each sought not to destroy Telara, but to rule it.

The vicious infighting that resulted allowed the people of Telara and their native gods to strike back, imprisoning the elemental deities one by one. United, the Telarans expelled even the powerful Regulos, destroying his physical form and then banishing his spirit.

Helped by their gods, the mages of Telara fashioned the Ward, a magical barrier around the world. The Ward would protect Telara from the planes, keeping the peace by imprisoning the captured Blood Storm and preventing the return of Regulos.

For eons, the Ward held. And then, abruptly, it was breached.

Aedraxis, a king whose rivalry with his brother led to the Mathosian Civil War, somehow made it possible for Regulos’ power to slip through again into Telara. The Ward was fractured, and a devastating magical disaster known as the Shade swept across the land, destroying or maiming whatever it touched.

In the eighty years since, massive rifts have begun to appear where the planes intersect, tearing through the Ward and bringing the chaos of these outer dimensions to Telara.

By studying the rifts, Telaran scholars have so far identified six planes that interact with Telara through cracks in the Ward, each representing a primal element of the universe: Life, Death, Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. There are many theories about the true nature of these discoveries, and there is much yet to be learned. But one thing is generally agreed: The elemental planes are in danger of destroying the world of Telara and must be stopped at all costs.


The Plane of Life:

The Plane of Life is a lush, green, interconnected web of flora. Flowers of all shapes, colors, and sizes grow from the mossy ground to the highest branches. Coarse, fibrous vines snake in and out among the roots, winding around the trunk of an immense tree that dominates the center of the plane. Many creatures of the Plane of Life make their homes in this tree's limbs, and the transformative power of Life itself permeates everything, often blurring the line between plant and animal. The Plane of Life is also home to the Fae, capricious faerie lords who bend nature and the seasons to their whims.

Greenscale, a dragon of the Blood Storm, focuses on the plane's chaotic aspects, corrupting Life and undermining the harmony widely espoused by nature followers. The Green Dragon and his minions usher in unchecked growth, often choking out native life. His acolytes despise civilization and all things synthetic or ordered. Although their corruption annihilates natural environments and animals, they still consider themselves devoted to the vicious brutality of purest Life.



The Plane of Death:

The Plane of Death is home to the damned. Hordes of skeletons and zombies march across fields choked with the blanched, broken bones of the dead. Obsidian shafts thrust from the ground like great, black blades. Liches, mummies, and Bomani demons crouch in the jagged shadows, while fleshcrafted abominations lurk beneath oily, black pools. The inhabitants of the Plane of Death are the spirits of those dead corrupted or seduced away from their final resting place.

This is the domain of Regulos the Destroyer, patriarch of the Blood Storm. Telara’s protectors vanquished Regulos when he first attempted to devour the world, destroying his physical form and banishing his spirit to the planes. His hunger to return has only grown since then, but he cannot commune with his followers unless they pass beyond the Ward that protects Telara. Indeed, more than one mage has found a way to walk the planes and been lured to do the Eater of Worlds’ bidding. Regulos’s followers know their quest for power could end all life, but welcome death as simply another state of existence, where the damned will call them master.


Dynamic Layered World:

Every player experiences a different adventure in the living, breathing world of Telara. Rift: Planes of Telara™ has all of the traditional quests and deep story arcs you expect from a fantasy MMO role-playing game, but there is unpredictability to life in Telara that guarantees even familiar terrain can offer new dangers and opportunities.

Whether it’s a previously peaceful farm being ravaged by demons, a tranquil forest glen suddenly ripped apart by a violent rift, or merely an unassuming traveling merchant with astounding wares, spontaneous events are taking place all across Telara for you to discover and take part in.

The ebb and flow of activity in Telara is always changing. Thousands of unexpected encounters are occurring at any moment, making every adventure unique — with more being added all the time. And just like in real life, you can revisit favorite haunts to see what's different, adding a novel sense of exploration to even well-trodden ground.



Classes & Callings:

In the Ascended class system, Soul Attunement is the player’s ability to commune with the souls of Telara’s honored dead and gain their powers and abilities. Each Calling has a unique selection of souls that can be embraced by the player, providing nearly endless opportunity to discover the path that’s right for them!




Champions are powerful Warriors who excel at melee combat. Wielding massive two-handed weapons, these battle-tested fighters find few equals in one-on-one battle. Champions strive to become one with their blade, constantly honing their fighting skills to win glory through warfare.



Reavers are warriors who combine the art of combat with the entropic energies of death. The slightest touch of their weapon can spread disease, incite madness, and death to those unlucky enough to face them.

Although Reavers can wield a full range of armors and weapons, they are most effective in heavy armor, carrying a shield in one hand and a weapon in the other. Reavers undermine an enemy's ability to fight back, grinding opponents down until they succumb.



The tradition of the Purifier begins with a baptism by fire, a test of faith from which only the strongest souls emerge. Those who pass are reborn as masters of the curative secrets of fire, able to heal the most grievous wounds with a searing touch.

These Clerics also draw upon a pact with their long-dead ancestors as the source of their offensive power. While Purifiers wreathe their allies in flames, they can unleash a spirit vanguard to visit wrath upon their foes.



The Inquisitor is a cleric who no longer follows the doctrines of life or death alone; instead, they stand between these forces demanding purity from both. An Inquisitor passes judgment on those who are worthy, and damns those who are corrupt.

Their true strength is derived from their extreme faith; as such, they forgo heavy armaments in favor of a simple hauberk of chain and a sturdy maul.

Although Inquisitors will never achieve the great heights of power from choosing an exclusive life or death path, their ability to harness and manipulate both energies make them extremely valuable companions.



Possessing deadly agility and mastery of the blade, the Nightblade can also draw upon the planar magics of fire and death to deal doom in a variety of ways. Favoring light armor, their ability to stalk and quickly eliminate their adversaries means the unfortunate quarry rarely has the chance to defend, let alone counterattack.



Rangers are consummate hunters who know the strengths and weaknesses of every beast, taming animal companions to augment their considerable prowess in ranged combat. This synergy between bow and beast allows Rangers to handily overcome the most daunting obstacles.



Blade Dancers are masters of wielding edged weapons. They specialize in ritualized combat movements that are lightning fast. Blade Dancers can overwhelm even an accomplished opponent's defenses, setting them up for a devastating coup de grace.

Lithe and agile, a Blade Dancer cherishes unimpeded movement over heavier protection, so they wear only light armors (such as leather) into combat. Extremely competent and aware, a Blade Dancer's weapons tend to be the only defensive protection they need. Unfortunately for their enemies, these blades aren't just used for defense, but offense as well.



Elementalists are mages who specialize in manipulating and controlling the raw energies of the planes. Through fierce discipline and strict study, these mages dedicate themselves to commanding the harshest and most chaotic forces known to exist.

Elementalists are recognized by their emaciated bodies and physical frailty, as they commit every ounce of energy toward strengthening their mental abilities. Their planar powers are typically channeled through enchanted staves of lightweight wood or steel, and they wear only the flimsiest of cloth vestments for protection.



Consummate practitioners of the dark arts, Warlocks embrace the grim forces of entropy and death. Protected within a cloak of shadows, they lurk on the edges of the conflict, as their deadly energies inevitably consume all that stand in their way.



Races:


The Eth are a tribe of humans who adapted to the harsh southern deserts by becoming master survivalists and taming their environment through magic. During the Blood Storm Wars, this inquisitive and fiercely scholarly race discovered a means to harness sourcestone as a fuel for eldritch war machines. After the construction of the Ward and the return of peace to Telara, these proto-technologies saw application in all areas of life. Yet the Vigil soon demanded that sourcestone technology be abandoned. Though it meant being cast from the gods’ sight, the people of Eth refused. In spite of the Vigil, they further conquered their environment and built an Empire of conglomerated city-states ruled by brilliant sorcerer kings. The power and influence of the Eth spread throughout Telara, fueled by the wonders of sourcestone.

Unfortunately, their technology fell into the clutches of insidious dragon cultists, and the Eth empire collapsed soon thereafter. Rather than risk the Blood Storm’s release, the Eth buried their wonders in the sand and destroyed all record of their forbidden techniques.




The Bahmi are the curious and reclusive denizens of the Rhaza'de Canyons. Their elemental ancestors, the Shalastiri, arrived on Telara through a rift from the Plane of Air at the time of the first Blood Storm Wars. Led by their prince, Bahmi, they proved invaluable warriors in the fight against the dragon gods.

But Bahmi's decision to aid Telara was also marked with tragedy. The placement of the Ward meant he and his companions would never be able to return to their homeland; despite this they stayed, and fought valiantly. With the Ward in place, and peace returned to Telara, Bahmi's people settled in the canyons, breeding with humans and forming a new race.

Despite a brutish reputation, Bahmi idealize hospitality, the pursuit of excellence, and community above all else. In strength of arms, the Bahmi are beyond measure, and their craftsmanship is superior. When the Eth Empire fell, many of the refugees found haven in the Bahmi lands, creating a deep bond between the two peoples.



Beautiful, elegant, and extremely cultured, the High Elves trace their roots all the way back to the Age of Legend, when their god Tavril and the other four gods of the Vigil created the world of Telara. The High Elves are one of the oldest and most storied races living on Telara.

For millennia, the High Elves ruled most of Telara, as the great forest of Tavra once spanned most of the world. It is this legacy of dwelling amid the great forest heights that allows them to fall from amazingly long distances without harm. As both caretakers and protectors of the great forests of Telara, the High Elves have an intimate connection with all the natural forces of the world, making them true masters of the healing arts.



Honor, faith, and duty are the most sacred tenets of the strong Mathosian humans who once ruled the rocky highlands of the north. Mathosians value strength, hard work, and a man’s oath above all other things except perhaps loyalty. It is their commitment to these virtues that helped turn Mathosia into one of the greatest empires Telara has ever known, and from the humblest of beginnings. Tragically, it was also the very beliefs that eventually tore them apart.

Humans first appeared in the great High Elven forests of Tavra sometime after the Age of Legend. Unlike many of the other races on Telara, humans were created by a collaboration of all the gods, which may explain their swift rise to dominance throughout the world. At first, Humanity was nothing more than wild beasts, seemingly foraging through the forests in very loose clans with no language or apparent intelligence. The High Elves were aware of them and treated them kindly like all other creatures in their care. But humans were surprisingly adaptable and observant; so they flourished, eventually learning languages, magic, and the tenets of civilization.



In the final days of the Mathosian civil war, the Ward that protected Telara from planar convergence was severely weakened by a disaster known as the Shade. Since that time, rifts between Telara and the planes have been increasingly devastating the land, and old enemies held at bay by elemental prisons have begun actively clawing their way out.

Telara’s greatest enemy, the death god Regulos, pounds against the outside of the Ward, seeking re-entry into Telara to finish the job he once started. Meanwhile, Telara’s own pantheon of gods has suddenly grown silent, and the world is descending into total chaos.

The people of Telara are now convinced that the end of the world is at hand. In these desperate final days, two major factions have arisen to battle the coming apocalypse: the Guardians and the Defiant. Though each faction wants to save the world, their beliefs and methods differ, and they war upon each other as often as they do other enemies of Telara.


Guardians are the chosen of the Telara's gods, the Vigil. When the tyrant Aedraxis called forth the power of the Plane of Death and devastated Telara, the Vigil chose the most powerful souls taken by the Shade to be the archons of the next age. A golden age awaits, but Telara must first be saved — by deed, by example, or by the sword. Its people must be redeemed, its corruptors cleansed. Only then will the Guardians be imbued with the divine and ascend to a higher level.



The Defiant do not care whether the gods abandoned the world or not. To them, this entire planar convergence disaster is the gods' fault in the first place. Indeed, as soon as things went from bad to worse, the gods suddenly and inexplicably disappeared.

So while the Guardians run around Telara building temples, sticking their noses in everyone's business, and desperately praying for a miracle, the Defiant plan on actually delivering one, even if it means being branded as heretics and operating outside the laws of the land.


The Ascended (Class System)

In Rift: Planes of Telara, players are one of the Ascended, a Telaran slain during the great Shade War and resurrected to combat the forces of Regulos. As an Ascended, players have access to special powers, the greatest of which is "Soul Attunement", the ability to commune with, and embrace, the souls of Telara's ancient fallen heroes.

The Soul Attunement system offers players nearly endless customization. In Rift: Planes of Telara, you’re encouraged to experiment with many combinations of souls and abilities to discover the path that’s right for you!

Souls

Players choose an Ascended Soul from one of the four callings (Warrior, Cleric, Mage, and Rogue) at character creation. These initial souls, which grow in power as they become more specialized, are flexible and have well-rounded abilities that make them great for both solo and group experiences. Players can later choose to augment, or even replace, embraced souls with other souls from within their calling. The process of enabling souls that players discover in their adventures is called Soul Attunement.

Players will also gain more specialized "Heroic Souls" that open up a number of new and exciting gameplay experiences, offering special achievements and rewards for players who discover them all.


The Soul Tree

Each attuned soul grants players access to a unique "Soul Tree," which contains all of the traits and abilities that a soul had mastered during its life. As your character levels up, you earn soul points that can be used to improve that tree's soul level, granting players access to even more powerful traits and abilities.

The Soul Tree — Branch Advancement

Players invest their soul points into the branches of the Soul Tree, picking and choosing the specific abilities and passive traits they desire. With each point spent, the Soul Tree increases in level, periodically unlocking new advancement options higher up the tree.


The Soul Tree — Root Advancement

Players automatically unlock new "root" abilities as the Soul Tree increases in level. If the branches represent the unique choices a player makes, the root represents the core power of the soul that all players have access to. Root abilities unlock quickly at first, but slow down as the tree’s soul-level increases.


Multiple Souls

As an Ascended grows in power, so does his or her ability to attune souls. Leveling a character will unlock the ability to attune additional souls. A maximum-level player will be able to attune up to three souls of their choosing!



E3 Gameplay Demo
E3 2010 - Rift General Manager Scott Hartsman BORKED E3 2010: The Hands of Death Walkthrough (Cam) HD http://www.gametrailers.com/video/e3...-planes/700767 E3 Dev Walkthrough Vid BORKED This is pretty much a copy/paste of the post i made over at BG   http://www.bluegartr.com/forum/showthread.php?t=95176 I'm excited at the possibilities of this game, even in it's early stages.

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